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to run the pentagon. former republican senator and decorated vietnam combat veteran, chuck hagel, already under fire before today. he got a rough treatment at today's hearing. kelly o'donnell is on the hill tonight with details. kelly, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. tough questions were expected, but the real surprise today came in how chuck hagel handled the all-day scrutiny. at times appearing unprepared or off his game. and that's after hagel had dozens of personal meetings with senators, trying to win their support to become the next secretary of defense. >> right up the stairs, sir. >> reporter: chuck hagel would break new ground as the first enlisted man, first vietnam veteran, to run the pentagon. and first cabinet nominee to get the super pac treatment. tv ads against his confirmation. >> chuck hagel is not a responsible option. >> reporter: but it was hagel's former colleagues and even friends who waged a coordinated attack today on hagel's judgment. john mccain seized on hagel's vocal opposition to the surge of troops in iraq in 2007. >> the question, senator ha
your perspective on the pentagon's role in securing our embassies? we just had a near suicide attack, if you will, suicide bomber, at an embassy in turkey just last week. what can be done more than what has been done now? >> the important things to do are first of all you've got to build up the host country capacity. in the end, these embassies do depend on host country, the details that provide security. so you've got to try to develop that. >> this shouldn't be more marines? >> no, no. let me get the rest of the part of it. you have to harden these embassies as much as possible. and third, we have been working with the ste department to determine whether additional marines ought to be assigned to that area. and in the end, the final alternative is our ability to respond in having our troops in a position where they can respond quickly. but i have to tell you, a lot of that still is dependent on whether intelligence tells us that we've got a big problem, and gives us enough warning so that we can get to the place to respond. >> did you have enough time to get there in time? >> no. >
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